© Great CircleThe doldrums are particularly wide. Banque Populaire VIII has been seriously slowed down for more than 36 hours. The wind conditions are hardly better for Hugo Boss. The distance between the two leaders has been divided by two, but it's the same for their average speed. If we consider the time, the gap has hardly evolved. It remains between 12 and 18 hours.
The question that arises is where is the way out? We see by comparing the situation of January 8th at 8 am (chart 1) with the forecast for January 9th at 8 am (chart 2), that there is no very clear limit. The competitors are not really getting out of the doldrums. It is rather the latter which is going to retract and gradually free the Imoca 60s. From tomorrow, a light easterly wind will settle on the zone, allowing both leaders to progress more regularly northward.
For the chasing boats, the equatorial zone should be easier to cross with fewer light wind © Great Circlezones. Jérémie Beyou, Jean Pierre Dick, Jean Le Cam and Yann Eliès may continue to reduce the distance to the two leaders.
For Louis Burton, the Northwesterly wind flow is going to make way for an cell of high pressure which he will have to negotiate tomorrow.
In the Pacific, the conditions are still pleasant for the fleet. Alan Roura, Arnaud Boissières and Fabrice Amedeo have to round the anticyclone which is stable. The Antarctic exclusion zone prevents them from sailing further South. They have to do as best they can with the light wind zone until Monday morning.
CD and BS/Great Circle